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First Lines of the Practice of Physic. In Four Volumes. With Practical and Explanatory Notes, by John Rotheram, M.D. Edinburgh: printed for Bell & Bradfute, and William Creech, Edinburgh; G.G.J. & J. Robinsons, and J. Murray, London, 1791.
- Originally published serially between 1777 and 1784, this is the first posthumous edition of the magnum opus of the great Edinburgh physician William Cullen (1710–90), who among much else introduced the term 'neuroses' to medical science. Cullen was a central figure in the Scottish Enlightenment. He was David Hume's physician and friend, and on intimate terms with Adam Smith, Lord Kames, Joseph Black, John Millar, and Adam Ferguson, among many others. Cullen tended Dugald Stewart in an illness when the latter was a teenager, and Francis Hutcheson's son was one of his pupils. When Samuel Johnson visited Edinburgh in 1773, Cullen and his eldest son were among five guests invited to dine with Johnson and Boswell. 'A fifth volume on diseases of women and children was planned but never appeared. The volumes were arranged nosologically, but they discussed in detail the symptoms and treatments of the diseases that he classified. They contained Cullen's mature thoughts on the essence of medical practice, and they were instantly accorded classic status, going through numerous editions and translations into all the major European languages, as well as adaptations by authors anxious to relate their disease constructs and treatments to differing national contexts. The volumes display Cullen at his clinical best, alert to the complexities of disease, concerned to do his best for his patients, and aware of the strengths and weaknesses of what he had to offer. "First Lines" should be seen as both a culmination and the swansong of Enlightenment medicine' (ODNB). PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: 4 volumes, large 8vo, xii, 448; 480; 444; 492 pp., half-titles to the first 3 volumes, contemporary mottled calf, rubbed, nicely rebacked with spine labels preserved, book labels of E. Sanderson, internally fresh with occasional spotting, a very good set without stamps or inscriptions. [Attributes: Hard Cover]
      [Bookseller: Rudi Thoemmes Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2017-07-18           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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